Born: Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, October 12, 1880. Parents: Edwin Proctor & Marie Josephine (Birdwell) Andrus. Graduated from Cornell University, 1912, Army Field Artillery School, 1927-28, Command and General Staff School, 1928-30, Army War College, 1933-34, Naval War College, 1934-35, 1939-30. DSc (hon) Drexel Institute of Technology, 1951.
Married: Eleanor Lightfoot, February 15, 1918.
Commissioned Second Lieutenant, 4th Field Artillery, 1912, and advanced through the grades to Major General, 1945. Retired: 1952.
Medals: Distinguished Service Cross, Distinguished Service Medal, Silver Star with oak leaf cluster, Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, Soldiers Medal, Bronze Star with oak leaf cluster. Member: Seal and Serpent, Scabbard and Blade, Semaphore (Cornell). Died: September 1968, and buried in Section 7 of Arlington National Cemetery.
Buried in the same section are:
Andrus, Edwin Proctor, Colonel, United States Army. 1851-1930. Father of Clift Andrus.
The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross to Clift Andrus, Brigadier General, U.S. Army, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy while serving with an Artillery Battalion of the 1st Infantry Division, in action against enemy forces in July 1943.
Brigadier General Andrus' intrepid actions, personal bravery and zealous devotion to duty exemplify the highest traditions of the military forces of the United States and reflect great credit upon himself, the 1st Infantry Division, and the United States Army.
Headquarters, Seventh U.S. Army, General Orders No. 33 (1943)
GENERAL CLIFT ANDRUS, 77, IS DEAD; EX-COMMANDER OF 1ST DIVISION
Artilleryman Took Over in Battle of the Bulge – Later Deputy Chief of 2nd Army
WASHINGTON, October 1, 1968 – Major General Clift Andrus, USA, retired, who commanded the First Infantry Division in its final campaigns of World War II, died Sunday in Walter Reed Army Medical Center of a heart ailment. He was 77 years old.
General Andrus was known as Mr. Chips in uniform, a reference to James Hilton’s fictional schoolmaster. The general had a small mustache, graying, sandy hair and gray eyes and smoked a pipe, played chess and read Dickens and Mark Twain in the field. He was said to give orders in the calm tones of a teacher addressing a class and was renowned for his coolness under fire.
When the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor in 1941, General Andrus was commanding the 24th Infantry Division Artillery. His units were credited with being the first to roll, being emplaced and ready to defend the beached within 35 minutes after the first bomb dropped.
Later he commanded the First Infantry Division’s artillery in all of its World War II campaigns – in North Africa, Sicily, France, Belgium and Germany – until he was named division commander in December 1944.
The General led the “Fighting First” from the Battle of the Bulge to its last combat action in Falkenau, Czechoslovakia.
General Andrus, born at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, the son of an Army Colonel, attended Cornell University, but left in 1911 to join the Army. He was an instructor at the Field Artillery School at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, in World War I, then attended the Command General Staff School, the Army War College and the Naval War College.
After World War II, General Andrus commanded Fort Sill from 1945 to 1949, was Assistant Army Chief of Staff for Plans and Operations at the Pentagon in 1949, and was named Deputy Commander of the Second Army at Fort Meade, Maryland, in 1950. He retired from that post in October 1952.
In 1951 he received an honorary Doctor of Science degree from Drexel Institute of Technology.
General Andrus was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, the Distinguished Service Medal, the Silver Star with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Legion of Merit with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Soldier’s Medal and the Bronze Star with Oak Leaf Cluster.
Surviving are his widow, the former Marion Lightfoot; a daughter, Mrs. Marion Seferlis of Garrett Park, Maryland; a brother, Cowles Andrus of Lake Shawnee, New Jersey, and a grandchild.
A funeral service will be held at 1:45 P.M. today at the Fort Myer, Virginia, chapel. Burial will be in Arlington National Cemetery.
Andrus, Margaret Josephine. Daughter of Clift Andrus. 1919-1929.
Andrus, Marie Josephine Birdwell: Wife of Edwin Proctor Andrus. 1865-1943.
Andrus, Marion Eleanor Lightfoot: Wife of Clift Andrus. 1899-1979.
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Michael Robert Patterson was born in Arlington and is the son of a former officer of the US Army. So it was no wonder that sooner or later his interests drew him to American history and especially to American military history. Many of his articles can be found on renowned portals like the New York Times, Washingtonpost or Wikipedia.
Reviewed by: Michael Howard